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Star Trek: The Original Series: Burning Dreams Paperback – 13 Jul 2010

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About the Author

Margaret Wander Bonanno is the bestselling author of Star Trek: Burning Dreams; Star Trek The Lost Era: Catalyst of Sorrows, Star Trek: Dwellers in the Crucible and Star Trek: Strangers from the Sky, as well as two science fiction trilogies, The Others and Preternatural. Born in Brooklyn, New York, she now lives on the Left Coast.

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A man who cannot move can do little else but think. Read the first page
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 22 reviews
21 of 21 people found the following review helpful
The Amazing Odyssey of Star Trek's Greatest Unsung Hero 28 July 2006
By Cam T. - Published on
Format: Mass Market Paperback
When I first picked up a copy of this book, it was largely out of curiosity. I've always been somewhat fascinated by Captain Pike, as well as the books and episodes (both Paramount, and fan-made episodes), since we never got to learn that much about him.

This book changed all of that.

Beginning when Captain Pike is returned to Talos IV, following his debilitation in The Original Series' two-parter "The Menagerie", Pike begins telling his life-story to the woman he left behind in the first pilot "The Cage", Vina. The story begins when he is only nine years old and carries on to his return to Talos, and a good deal beyond that. I won't say anymore on that, not wanting to ruin it for other readers. :) This was one of the few books to ever make me cry, because it was so well-written and came to a truly satisfying conclusion.

The only complaint I would make about this book is that it's not completely linear, but tends to jump around the timeline every now and then, which occasionally makes it a little hard to follow. But for real Trek fans, it won't be hard.

Enjoy this book! I really have, and I will again, when the time comes for me to read it again.
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
Captain Pike is brought to a stark clarity in Burning Dreams 4 Aug. 2006
By Fr. Robert F. Lyons - Published on
Format: Mass Market Paperback
As Star Trek fans the world over celebrate the 40th anniversary of the beloved show's debut on NBC television, Margaret Wander Bonanno's "Burning Dreams" goes beyond the adventures of Captain James T. Kirk and his crew, back to the youth of an earlier commander of the Enterprise, Christopher Pike.

"Burning Dreams" is a parallel story. While the framing story of the novel itself opens with a Talosian summons to Ambassador Spock, the real meat of the tale is found in visiting the life and experiences of Pike on Talos IV after his transport there in the first season Star Trek episode "The Menagerie".

Arriving on Talos IV, Pike leans to develop a deeper understanding of the telepathic link between himself, Vina, and the Talosians. In doing so, we are given a vehicle by which we can see the life of Chris Pike evolve from childhood to maturity. We see the challenges he faced in his youth, meet some old friends, and are given a chance to experience a mission with him aboard the Enterprise after his initial experience on Talos IV.

While each of these threads provide unique and compelling stories in-and-of themselves, Bonanno has managed to weave them together in a fufilling and exciting way, one that has a significant payoff as Chris Pike is given a chance to view Talos and to chart a course for his future and the future of the world he now calls home.

Along the way, we learn more about Vina, the Talosians, and even Spock... with each element of the story coming together at just the right time to produce a satisfying conclusion to one of the strongest novels I have read all year.

In "Burning Dreams", Bonanno has brought the depth of writing and thought that pervades her work to the life of Christopher Pike, and it is an experience that any Star Trek fan will not want to miss.
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
Great Book! 27 July 2006
By George Flowers - Published on
Format: Mass Market Paperback
This is a great Star Trek book! It gives the reader a lot of insight into mostly Captain Pike's life, but also Vina's and even the Talosians'. Their stories are told so wonderfully by Bonanno that you can see what they see, and feel their feelings. Pike and crew were so underdeveloped, and it is great to see a book like this finally published. It is a rather quick read, and you may easily get lost in it. I recommend this book to anyone who loved the Cage, and its characters, because you get a lot of background. Don't come expecting a definitive "pre-Kirk" character guide, though. The story is mostly about Pike. It is just that the author smartly weaves parts about Vina, the Talosians, and others into the story. Also coming: stories in a similar vein focusing on Kirk, Spock, and McCoy!
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
The Best Captain Pike Novel 30 July 2006
By Picardfan007 - Published on
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Being a fan of the actor Jeffrey Hunter, I always wanted to know what happened to his character. Especially after the events of the famous and only two part episode of the original series. It seems that Pike went back to live with Vina after his accident, which pretty much left him wheel chair bound for good. It was sad to see those lights on his chair. Red for no, Green for yes.

The captain had no way to verbally communicate. After his tragic

disfigurment he no longer looked like the Pike we saw in the first episode. Life would imatate art. The real actor who portrayed the captain would be the victim of a special effects stunt gone bad. If I remember Jeff Hunter passed away as a consequence of flying shrapnel from an explosion back in 1968. This was before the days of CAT scans and computer aided detection.

I only wish he were around to see what became of Star Trek. Perhaps the show would have only lasted a year without him. I do have to say he was more like Captain Picard than Kirk. It was Pike who uttered the famous phrase "Engage" first!

The book has more emotional impact than I expected. For a captain who could never express how he felt; he certainly was driven by a troubled past! I'd have to say there is more layers in this story than your regular trek tale. I am very surprised that it wasn't a hardcover. It was very touching to see a man who couldn't ordinarily express himself; able to do so through the world of illusion. Remember the illusion world of the Talosians? We get to see them once again. Only in this book, Pike is there to stay.

I wouldn't be surprised if this book didn't get nominated for an award in science fiction circles. It does have the depth and scope that I have never seen in a Star Trek novel.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Excellent Bio of Christopher Pike, 25 Jan. 2007
By Michael Bond - Published on
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Christopher Pike was captain of the USS Enterprise before James Kirk. The story of him and the Talosians is told in The Menagerie, a two-part episode on The Original Series. Talos is a planet whose inhabitants have incredible mental powers (and twiggy little bodies). Pike is captured by them in an early mission. Years later, after Pike is crippled (fried to a crisp) by Delta radiation, Spock returns him to Talos to live out his life in what the viewer supposes will be Talosian-generated fantasies with Vinna, a human female who resides there. But does he? Is is a trick by the Talosians?

Now, fifty years later, Spock is summoned to the planet without being given a reason. Out of loyalty to Pike, he again risks the consequences and goes to Talos, unsure of what he will find and if he can trust the Talosians at all.

Within this framework, the biography of Chris Pike of unfolds from his childhood, to his entry into Star Fleet, his years on the Enterprise and the accident the leads to The Menagerie.

I thought the author did a very good job filling in the background of and fleshing out this character who was so short-lived in the series.
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